First published in Business Today on May 19th, 2023 here.
A latest study has found that India has the potential to create up to 35 million green jobs by 2047 across traditional and emerging sectors, including in renewable energy, waste management, electric vehicles, green construction and sustainable textiles.
“India has the potential to create 35 million green jobs by 2047. Strengthening the skill ecosystem consistently and equitably will ensure a just transition, leaving no vulnerable groups behind,” stated the report by Skills Council for Green Jobs and Sattva Consulting and supported by J.P. Morgan.
The report further states that the promised green growth is an opportunity for the country to create meaningful livelihoods through two interconnected strategies — leverage the global need for skilled human resources to help itself and other countries achieve net zero targets and ensure just and well-managed transitions for labour in traditional industries that are impacted as a result of these shifts.
More importantly, however, it states that several systemic challenges must be addressed to accelerate the skill building efforts as there is still a significant need to increase the number of candidates trained to achieve green growth at a faster pace.
“These barriers include lack of policies for green skill development, funding gaps, inadequate skill infrastructure, exclusion of vulnerable groups, and lack of collaboration among key actors,” stated the report titled ‘Gearing Up the Workforce for a Green Economy’.
The report highlighted the fact that with regards to green transitions in traditional industries, more than 138 Indian companies have committed to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.
The automotive, construction, and textile sectors are leading the way in India’s green transition, through electric vehicles (EVs), green construction, and sustainable textiles and apparel, it added.
“The growth of EVs is expected to create 10 million direct and 50 million indirect jobs by 203011, offering an opportunity not only to hire new workers but also to upskill and integrate the existing 35 million Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) workforce,” said the report.
The study is the outcome of a survey conducted among 2,328 candidates across five metro cities that revealed that 85 per cent of them had heard about ‘green’ or climate-positive jobs.
However, this percentage significantly dropped to 35 per cent across all sectors when they were asked about specific job roles in the sector or their awareness of skill-building programs for the same.
Hence, investments in awareness and translating awareness to action is critical, stated the report.
“Green growth and green jobs are a priority area for the government, and we are fully committed and continuously engaging with industry and other stakeholders to ensure that youth are suitably skilled, certified, and fully prepared to meet the evolving requirements of the industry,” said A K Tiwari, Secretary, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE), while releasing the report.
Incidentally, the research outlines five big bets initiatives that have the potential to create jobs at scale for people from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds.
These include reskill and upskill existing workforce, training entry-level workforce, supporting entrepreneurship-led models, fostering diversity & inclusion, and ensuring formalisation, and protections and working conditions of green jobs.
To read the full report, click here.
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